Burnin’ Calories and Shreddin’ the GNAR

Hi SEGR’s! Sorry we’ve been absent. Erica and I both happened to be in Vail skiing this weekend, which was a total blast. We only overlapped for a couple of hours, during which time Erica’s dad forced us to do shots of Jager with him. Totally Paleo, right?

Totally not pros at this. Sidenote- guess which one of us was skiing all day, and which one was sitting in the spa? Hint- the beastly creature in the pink Bondi was not in the spa.

Clearly no better way to start off a healthy blog post by sharing pictures of us doing shots. I swear I’m going somewhere with this..

It’s hard to stay healthy when you’re traveling. There’s temptation everywhere, and it’s hard to prepare your own food. I was a little anxious about this, so I packed about 20 Larabars.. for 4 days.. normal! Even though the gate agent at security probably thought I was crazy and going camping for 2 weeks, I definitely think it’s better to be prepared and always be able to have a healthy option on the go.

Turns out I didn’t need to go overboard packing the Larabars because Colorado is a super healthy place. I was in Denver for 2 nights and was pleasantly surprised that both restaurants had gluten free menus. Not shocking, as Denver is ranked one of the fittest cities in America. At Vail, they also had tons of healthy choices for lunch- salads, soups, fresh fruit, GLUTEN FREE COOKIES!! Amazing. I really hope that the food industry will continue to shift towards offering gluten-free options- it makes my life a whole lot easier.

Another awesome thing about taking a ski trip- you’re working out the whole time! I was nervous at first about missing 4 days at the gym, but then my boyfriend reminded me that I’m a moron and would in fact be working out the entire time we were there. I found this great list that describes why skiing is so awesome and kick ass for you:

TONES YOUR STOMACH MUSCLES

The art of skiing is to keep yourself steady on the slippery slope or through deep powder. To help balance yourself, you naturally engage your core stability muscles – the sheath of deep muscle that starts either side of your spine and runs around your body, ending up in your pelvic region. These are key stomach muscles which, when strengthened, act a bit like a corset, compressing the lower abdomen (which means a flatter tummy), toning your stomach muscles and stabilising your spine to protect it when you bend down or fall over on the piste. Mastering your core stability will also help you balance on the piste and improve your overall coordination.

IMPROVES YOUR CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM

Whether you’re a beginner or an advanced skier, you will be giving your cardiovascular system a good workout on the piste. Improving your cardiovascular system means elevating your heart rate which increases blood circulation, bringing more nutrients and oxygen to your tissues and helping to remove waste from the body more quickly. Working out in this way also means your muscles are able to draw in more oxygen and blood which produces more capillaries and allows your muscles to expand, and, in turn, burn up calories more quickly. Betony Garner of the Ski Club of Great Britain believes skiing for just half an hour without stopping is a good cardiovascular workout.

FULL BODY WORKOUT

Although skiing exercises all our major muscle groups, it particularly targets the inner and outer thighs, hamstrings and butt muscles – thanks to the crouching position that skiing involves. Warming up and down for ten minutes before and after skiing will help prevent muscle soreness and potential injuries by lengthening your muscle fibers. The best way to make sure you are stretching properly is to do a lower leg, hamstring, thigh, lower back, upper back and arm stretch and hold it in the position for 40 seconds. Skiing also stretches your upper and lower arms, says Corinne Thompson of the gym chain David Lloyd’s. ‘As you grip your poles and steer around moguls you use your triceps (backs of upper arms), biceps (front of upper arms) and lower arm muscles to control your speed and direction,’ she says. ‘This action also engages your shoulder blades and lower back giving a good overall workout.’

HELPS YOU LOSE WEIGHT

According to fitness experts, you can lose up to five pounds during a week’s skiing holiday. This is because a typical day’s skiing can burn up to 3,000 calories – far more than a session at the gym. Bethony Garner of Ski Club of Great Britain says the steeper the slope, the more calories you’ll burn because your body has to work harder to keep your body balanced. ‘Experienced skiers are also more likely to negotiate moguls – which use up even more muscle power and so burn even more calories,’ she says. Not only that, but being exposed to sub zero temperatures means your body is forced to raise its own body temperature and it does this by burning off even more calories! Betony points out taking it easy on the hot chocolate and pastries can also encourage weight loss. ‘High calorific food and drinking alcohol goes hand-in-hand with skiing holidays, but avoiding them will help you lose weight even faster,’ she says.

Read more here (via Daily Mail)

I couldn’t get over how exhausted I was at the end of each day. You really are getting a full body whooping. I wasn’t thinking of skiing as a workout because it’s so beautiful up in the mountains, and I was having a blast with friends. It was more of a social thing than a workout. But I did a calorie tracker and turns out I was burning about 350-400 calories per hour. I skiied on average 4 hours each day.. not bad! Definitely beats running on a treadmil staring at a wall.

I’ll leave you with some shots (pictures, not booze, sheesh) from my trip. Hope everyone had a great holiday weekend!

PS- Do I ever not have a Bondi Band on my head?

-ES


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